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The Connecticut State Prison System

Following the conviction of a crime in Connecticut, the judicial authority shall order the offender confined, i.e., serve time, in a facility established for such purpose. These facilities, run by local, state, and federal authorities, make up the Connecticut prison system. Per the public records law, official records regarding incarcerated offenders, and the nature of the conviction, are available to interested persons.

What is the Difference Between Jail and Prison in Connecticut?

These terms are used interchangeably to refer to where the judicial authority in Connecticut remands offenders. However, both are different viz the period of incarceration, the supervising authority, and severity of the crime.

Regarding the period of incarceration, a jail is a facility that holds offenders sentenced to less than one year following conviction. Prisons, on the other hand, hold offenders convicted to more than one year following a conviction. Furthermore, offenders convicted of misdemeanors serve sentences in jails while felony offenders serve time in prisons. Often time, a jail also functions as a temporary holding facility for offenders awaiting trial and convicted felons pending transport to prison.

Meanwhile, jails are typically under the supervision of local law enforcement. Prisons are under the management and supervision of state and federal authorities. The Connecticut Department of Corrections manages state prisons while the Federal Bureau of Prisons operates and manages federal prisons in the state.

How Many Prisons are in Connecticut?

There are 20 operational state prison facilities under the supervision of the Connecticut Department of Corrections. The U.S. government also operates one federal prison in Connecticut. Each of the eight counties also operates a jail or detention center for offenders.  

How do I search for an Inmate in Connecticut State Prison?

A person who wishes to confirm the incarceration of an inmate may accomplish this objective in two ways:

Direct contact: Interested persons may use this directory to find the contact information of prison facilities in Connecticut. Depending on the available contact methods, a person may phone the prison or send an email. In most cases, a visit to the administrative office is based on appointment only and not available to the public. Due to phone waiting times and a backlog of emails, contacting a prison may be slow. Besides, state prisons have disclosure policies regarding custody of inmates involved in active investigations. 

Online search: This method involves querying an electronic database of inmates within the Connecticut prison system. To use the inmate info search, the searcher must provide the inmate identification number or inmate name. Using the identification number—if known, is the fastest and most precise way to search for an inmate as these numbers are unique to every inmate. With a name-based search, the searcher must filter through related results to find the inmate of interest. The same applies to finding inmates in the federal prison in Connecticut. However, the searcher must use the BOP offender locator.

Are Incarceration Records Public in Connecticut? 

Yes, incarceration records and criminal history records are public information in Connecticut. Interested persons must contact the specific local and state agencies to obtain a copy of the documents.

Records that are considered public may be accessible from some third-party websites. These websites often make searching more straightforward, as they are not limited by geographic location, and search engines on these sites may help when starting a search for specific or multiple records. To begin using such a search engine on a third-party or government website, interested parties usually must provide: 

  • The name of the person involved in the record, unless said person is a juvenile 
  • The location or assumed location of the document or person involved 

Third-party sites are independent of government sources and are not sponsored by these government agencies. Because of this, record availability on third-party websites may vary. 

How to Look Up Jail Records in Connecticut

To look up jail records in Connecticut, contact the penal institution that has custody of the inmate. For state institutions, send a mail request to:

Connecticut Department of Correction
Public Information Office
24 Wolcott Hill Road
Wethersfield, CT 06109
Phone: (860) 692–7780

The mail must contain a written request for inmate records citing the state’s public records law and the reasons for requesting the records. The records request must also describe the inmate using the name, physical description, and estimated incarceration date. Providing this relevant information helps administrative staff retrieve the records of interest easily.  

The requester must then attach a valid means of identification, enclose the documents in a self-addressed stamped envelope, and mail the request to the address above. He/she must contact the facility ahead to request an estimate of the cost of reproducing the requested records.

Arrest records and criminal records are also useful resources for finding the incarceration history of a person. While both records describe the person’s encounter with the criminal justice system, the arrest record does not provide definitive proof of guilt or conviction. An interested person may get arrest records from local law enforcement in the jurisdiction of the arrest. The State Police Bureau of Investigation processes requests for criminal records.

Note that the criminal record obtained from this agency only shows the person’s criminal history within Connecticut. To obtain a criminal record of arrest, indictments, and convictions in multiple jurisdictions in the U.S., request a criminal record from the FBI. Court records on criminal cases involving convicted offenders are also available to interested persons via the criminal case lookup.

Can Jail Records be Expunged in Connecticut?

It depends. For the most part, adult conviction records in Connecticut are only eligible for expungement where the individual receives a pardon. However, a person may apply for expungement if the state decriminalized the offense. Also, expungement is available when a retrial finds the individual not guilty and dismissed the charges. To expunge a conviction record in Connecticut, follow the systematic instructions. Generally, there is a waiting period between the date of conviction and the application date for expungement. The applicant must also meet other requirements. Depending on the circumstances involved, getting an expungement takes an average of six months.

  • Criminal Records
  • Arrests Records
  • Warrants
  • Driving Violations
  • Inmate Records
  • Felonies
  • Misdemeanors
  • Bankruptcies
  • Tax & Property Liens
  • Civil Judgements
  • Federal Dockets
  • Probate Records
  • Marriage Records
  • Divorce Records
  • Death Records
  • Property Records
  • Asset Records
  • Business Ownership
  • Professional Licenses
  • And More!